World Cup Boot Watch: the Most Unusual Boot Choices on Show in Qatar
The majority of the boots worn during the first week of the tournament have come from the World Cup packs of Nike; Adidas and - to a lesser extent - Puma. Nonetheless, some players caught our eye with their custom colourways, older models and boots from lesser spotted brands.
World Cup Boot Watch
We've seen plenty of players in Nike's copper coloured silos and Adidas' vibrant Al Rihla pack, as the two big boys dominate in the footwear department. Puma are quite well represented too, but it's always more interesting to see some more left-field choices on the big stage. Check out some of the most intriguing boots we've spotted during the first week of the World Cup.
DeAndre Yedlin - Tru Tencaci
By our estimations, the former Newcastle and Spurs defender has given Tru their first ever World Cup appearance, a few weeks after we spotted them in the Premier League for the first time on the feet of Kurt Zouma.
Joel Campbell - Pirma Supreme X
One time Arsenal man Campbell now plys his trade in Mexico, and has started wearing boots from local brand Pirma since he moved there. He's worn two different colourways so far of their Supreme X boot.
Darwin Nunez and Mathías Olivera - Custom Colourway Nike Mercurials
The two Uruguay players opted for a slightly older model of the Mercurial in custom colourways in their opener against Korea. Nunez went for a sky blue and white paintjob to match his kit, while Oliveira's lime green pair of Superflys are a little bit louder.
Bryan Ruiz - Copa Mundial
As one of the elder statesmen at this World Cup, Ruiz has gone for boot to match this status, the classic Copa Mundial. He's blacked his out, but we could see the boot disappear completely in the not too distant future.
Japan Players - Mizuno Azure Blue Pack
Most of Mizuno's representation at this tournament comes from the squad of their home nation, with 5 of Japan's players wearing their boots. Most of them are sporting the different models of the Azure Blue pack, while Ao Tanaka and Maya Yoshida have stuck with their white Morelia IIs and Alphas respectively.
Miki Yamane - Asics DS Light
Another Japanese player with footwear from his homeland, Yamane is the only player to wear Asics boots at the tournament, standing out in his white DS Lights.
Ismaila Sarr - Nike Mercurial CR7
Of course Ronaldo himself is wearing the boots that were specially designed for him, but we weren't expecting to see Watford's Ismaila Sarr in the latest CR7 edition Mercurials as well. It's quite curious seeing players wear the signature boots some of the games biggest stars, especially when they find themselves playing at the same tournament.
One of the protagonists of Morocco's shock win over Belgium, Sabiri thought he had scored the first free kick of the tournament, only for FIFA to award the goal to his teammate Roman Saiss. At least his custom whiteout Mercurials with red initals and number matched his kit perfectly.
Walid Cheddira - Lotto Solista
Born in Italy, Cheddira represents the country of his birth through his choice of boots, the Lotto Solista. Once a common sight on the feet of Serie A players, Lotto's presence in the game is not what it once was, so they'll be delighted to appear with Cheddira at the tournament.
Raheem Sterling - New Balance Furon v7 Raheem Sterling Stone Island
There are a few New Balance athletes across a number of squads, but Raheem Sterling has been chosen by the brand to front the Stone Island collaboration on the pitch.
Aziz Behich - Mizuno Morelia Neo
Another Mizuno sighting. Behich has opted for the red colourway of the Morelia Neo rather than the more recent blue offering.
Ramin Rezaeian - Niek Mercurial Vapor X
Iran's Rezaeian is one of many Iran players to prefer something from Nike's back catalogue, taking us back to 2015 with his bright pink Mercurial Vapor X.
Mehdi Torabi - Nike Zoom Mercurial Vapor 15 KM
Unfortunately Torabi doesn't have the global appeal to warrant his own signature boot from Nike, but he seems happy enough to make do with the most recent one they created for Kylian Mbappé.
Akram Afif - Adidas F50 Adizero Messi
One final spotting of a signature edition, as Qatar forward Akram Afif wore the Adidas F50 Adizero Messi. Sadly the boots did not bestow him with any of the magic associated with their namesake, as his side were the first team eliminated from the tournament.
Roozbeh Cheshmi - Adidas Predator 19.1
Cheshmi ignited some extremely late drama in Group B with his 98th minute strike against Wales in his blue and black Predator 19.1s. Probably the last model to retain at least some of the visual identity of the Predator range, we wouldn't mind seeing Adidas revert to something more along these lines.
Have you spotted any other standout boots that we've missed here? Let us know in the comments.